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Welcome Aboard, GFS!

Drumroll please... We’re thrilled to announce that Goodwin Financial Services (GFS) is joining Altus Financial, giving our clients access to even more market-leading wealth management expertise. GFS has forged a longstanding reputation as one of Sydney’s premi.....

Aged Care - 4 min read

Nobody looks forward to making decisions about aged care. On top of the emotional strain, you might feel confused about how it all works. Decisions about aged care can affect the entire family, both emotionally and financially. That’s why it’s essential to research your options so you can make informed decisions.

In this article, we’ll look at the different options available. Remember that you don’t have to make these decisions all alone; you can always discuss the details and get answers to your questions by reaching out to your wealth adviser.

 

Staying Home (Community Care)

For parents who only require minimal care, staying at home can be a terrific option. You can hire support for your parents, scaling up or down according to their needs.

What kinds of support can help to keep your parents in their own home?

  • General home maintenance or modifications (such as wheelchair ramps and reconfiguration of amenities)
  • Domestic help (cleaning, food preparation, grocery shopping)
  • Personal care (dressing and bathing)
  • Transportation services
  • Mobility equipment (walking frames, etc.)
  • Mental health services (counselling)
  • Nursing (changing wound dressings, monitoring blood pressure, etc.)
  • Therapies for staying physically active and mobile

Staying at home provides a feeling of comfort and well-being for many people. With neighbours next door and a house full of memories, many seniors continue to enjoy their chosen homes.

Keeping your parents in their home may also help to stretch their budget farther than other aged care options as well, even when you have to hire specific services.

 

Retirement Villages

On the other hand, some people don’t want to stay in their homes in their later years. Perhaps they don’t want to think about home maintenance or wish to live closer to other retired people.

A privately owned retirement village can be an excellent option in this case. Designed for people over age 55, retirement villages offer independent living with an added level of security and support. Since this housing option is privately owned, it doesn’t receive government subsidies. They often provide amenities like the following:

  • Communal dining facilities
  • Organised social engagements
  • Onsite management and maintenance
  • Recreational facilities
  • Swimming, gymnasiums and bowling greens

Some retirement villages support aged care facilities within the complex, so as residents age, they don’t have to move again, and they can use government benefits as they need more help.

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Residential Care (Aged Care Homes)

When your parents can no longer live independently, aged care homes may be the best option. With day-to-day help with nursing care, dining and activities, residential care also prevents feelings of isolation.

Sometimes, people need residential care on a limited basis. For instance, if one of your parents faces a long recovery after an operation or illness, a stay in an aged care home could help them to get back on their feet before returning home.

Aged Care Homes differ from retirement villages in that they’re owned by people who have been approved by the government to provide aged care. The government funds a range of aged care homes across Australia that provide support services to those who need it.

If you decide on residential care for mom and dad, visit several homes to find the best fit. Each aged care home is different, so it’s essential to choose the right one for your parents. As you do your research evaluate these features:

  • Room accommodations (including furnishings and bedding)
  • Hotel-type services (laundry, meals and social activities)
  • Personal care (bathing, dispensing of medication, nursing and therapy services)
  • Clinical supervision (speech therapy, podiatry, physiotherapy, etc.)

The Australian government pays aged care subsidies directly to the aged care home. The amount of funding that a home receives is based on a formula, which includes the following:

  • An assessment of your parents’ care needs by the home 
  • The amount you can afford to contribute to care and accommodation expenses (according to an income and assets assessment)

To receive the funding, subsidised aged care homes must meet Aged Care Quality Standards.

Making the Decision

As you can see, several attractive options are available for aged care, but how do you know which one will work best for your family? If you’d like to talk your situation over with an aged care expert, give us a call at Altus. We can help you evaluate your options through a financial lens, weighing the pros and cons of each.

Reduce your stress, and settle your parents in a spot where they’ll be comfortable, happy, and looked after by trained professionals, even if that place is home, sweet home. We look forward to talking with you.

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